With an eye toward expanding Chicago Public Schools’ online education offerings, the school board will consider awarding a share of a three-year, $1.9 million contract Wednesday to K-12 Virtual Schools LLC, a lucrative, publicly traded company that educators warn has a history of poor academic performance, the Chicago Tribune reports. The Virginia-based K-12 has been a forerunner in virtual classrooms since its creation a decade ago. It is now the nation’s largest for-profit education management organization, with more than 39,000 students in two dozen schools across the U.S. K-12 opened Chicago’s Virtual Charter High School to much fanfare in 2006, part of a push under former CPS chief Arne Duncan to expand alternative education options for parents seeking tougher curriculum for their children or safer learning environments outside of traditional neighborhood schools…

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staff and wire services reports